Making Demands Again & Designing Design In
At our Startup Factory funded startup Curagami we've been asking questions about how online communities are built and sustained. We are beginning to connect some important ideas from great thinkers:
Dan Ariely TED Talk on Meaning, Work and Motivation
Trendwatching Report on "Demanding Brands"
Daniel Pink's book Drive: Surprising Truth Behind What Motivates Us
Content Marketing Triptych
Web Design & "Work"
Yes, we now realize, you can make your website too easy. You can also make it too hard. Perceptions of "hard" and "easy" are highly relative judgements. An experts will find things easy the novice find very difficult.
SO one of the most important ideas for designing "work" into a website is finding a way to put people of similar levels of understanding in the same bus. We thinking of all visitors in 3 cohorts or tribes:
* Novice or new to whatever the site is sharing.
* Learning and so exposed to and thinking about the subject.
* Expert able to teach the Novice and Learning group.
At first we thought we should cluster members of each of these tribes into their own paths. All novices together, all learners together. After listening to Malcolm Gladwell and refining some of our testing conditions we realize such artificial selection harms rather than helps.
Community Is The Key
The key is creation of online community where peer to peer interaction is possible, supported, encouraged and rewarded. We, as website designers, can't combine our Lego blocks in as many variations as possible given the real creativity and engagement of our customers.
The ONLY thing we can do as web designers is clearly communicate OUR creation story, provide access to our Lego-blocks and CURATE the cool creations of our tribe.
The rub comes in at the "provide access to our Lego-blocks" web design stage. If your blocks encourage creativity and just the right amount of work your customers will want to SHOW YOU their creations as we learned from our friends at Haiku Deck.
Our interaction with Haiku Deck helped us create the Content Marketing Triptych:
* Tool that engages the BUILDER in us.
* Gallery where tool users share their creations (their work).
* Personal Profile (their content on your site).
The missing "magic box" for web designers is knowing WHO to ASK what. These ideas are "live ammunition" for ecommerce merchants. Too much work and you lose money. Too little and you lose the opportunity to win hearts and minds through just the right amount of work on top of the perfect contextually relevant ask.
What IS clear is finding ways to make demands and reward what our customers and advocates do with those demands is a CSF (Critical Success Factor) to winning web design. What are your experiences with building work back into your marketing?